when I rolled out of the hay and took a peek outside, I
couldn't help but feel a little like Bill Murray in
“Groundhog Day.” The little critter wouldn't see his
shadow if you painted it on the ground for him. The
forecast is not great, with more gray and drizzle this
morning and possible clearing this afternoon. So grab some
coffee - oh wait, it's Saturday, and everyone out there is
probably headed for the drop zone. Sigh. Well, check back
The word is that the skies are clear a few miles to
the south and the 16-way teams are on “stand by to stand
by.” The latest plan is to bang out a couple of rounds
of 16-way and then switch to 10-way.
No, these are from
last night, not this morning ;-)
Sunshine! Sunshine! We have sunshine! Grab yer socks
and pull the chocks we're gonna be skydiving here soon!
(Fifteen seconds after I wrote that, Ted turns to me and
says, “You got any socks?” not knowing what I'd just
written. He's getting on a plane. Twins!)
For those of you who've been waiting for the Knights
FX 16-way team photo, it's up now.
Moving on to round 3 of 16-way, my Deguello friends had
a nice 6 pointer, then Airspeed smoked a 10 on it with
some really nice 3D moves.
OH my goodness - on Knights FX round 3, one of the
Knights spent almost the entire skydive trying to put a
loose reserve handle back in the pocket, and they get a 2
on the jump! I HATE it when that happens. I'd hate it more
if my team wasn't in 2nd place now! ;-)
So with round 3 in the bag, AZ Blue has a sudden 6
point lead over Deguello. There are four teams within
three points of 4th place.
Well, Airspeed Blue knocked the socks off the
competition in round 4 with a 14. Knights FX looked like
the keystone cops in freefall building the first point and
settled for a 6, while Deguello was slow and smooth all
the way for a 6 as well. I think they are switching to
10-way speed now.
10-Way! The “original” belly-flying competition is
under way. Now there's a horse of a different color!
The teams that aren't doing 10-way are driving on with
their 16-way jumps, so we got both going on right now.
After an excellent round 1, Chicago STL had a rough 2nd
jump, while Airspeed pulled into the lead with a fast
12.04 second jump.
Most of you
have done/are doing a terrific job, but there are a
few of you who prefer to use an exit that causes the
judges a great deal of difficulty. This exit is when
you leave the airplane before your team does,
causing the judges to start the clock on you
instead of your team. I've seen quite a few
jumps where the judges try 8 or 10 times to get a
good start time while they are cursing you under
their breath. So you should do your teams and the
judges a favor: learn not to exit before your team
;-) t2 (uhm, 2 time world champion and many time
national champion camera flyer)
After watching Airspeed's round 3 of 10-way, I'm
thinking that they're well on their way to sweeping the
2000 U.S. Nationals of Formation Skydiving. “Power of
10” - Carl Daugherty's team - got a 23.29" on round
three, and they're lucky it wasn't a 40; only one of the
judges caught the illegal grip that was taken out the
door. Let's get it together folks and have a clean finish
10- and 16-way have completed 4 rounds each, and the
judges are about to catch up...
Thank you for
the many e-mails and OmniKudos. We appreciate it!
But this coverage was made possible by Perris Valley
Skydiving providing us with a *VERY* fast Internet
connection, and we at OmniSkore would appreciate it
if you forwarded
your appreciation to our fine host. We all thank
OUCH MAJOR RULES VIOLATION Carl's 10-way team is being
popped on all their jumps because of illegal contact with
the right side of the airplane in the lineup! It's black
& white in the rules, you can't touch that part of the
door, and there they are doing it on every jump. You know,
every year we see a big conflict in the 10-way rules
interpretation and judging, and this one is no different.
I think I see the beginning of the end for this event at
the nationals. It's a real headache for the judges. That's
too bad too, because 10-way speed is the original FS
event; it would be a shame to see it die, but such is the
nature of competition evolution.
But kudos, with only a little bias because I'm the
alternate, for Roger's
team. By the book and clean.
Well, that's it for tonight. Let's hope the groundhog
sees it's shadow in the morning!